Vaccine Technologies

Areas of Operation

Pathogen inactivation

The unit coordinates a consortium consisting of Fraunhofer IZI and three other Fraunhofer Institutes (FEP, IPA and IGB) for the development of low-energy electron irradiation (LEEI) for the generation of inactivated vaccines or novel diagnostic antigens.

Already in 2019, the technology was out-licensed to the filling line manufacturer Bausch & Ströbel, from which the company KyooBe Tech GmbH ( emerged as a spin-off, which will take over the further development until marketability at the end of 2023.



  • Finkensieper J, Issmail L, Fertey J, Rockstroh A, Schopf S, Standfest B, Thoma M, Grunwald T, Ulbert S. Low-Energy Electron Irradiation of Tick-Borne Encephalitis Virus Provides a Protective Inactivated Vaccine. Front Immunol. 2022 Mar 7;13:825702. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2022.825702. eCollection 2022. 
  • Fertey J, Thoma M, Beckmann J, Finkensieper J, Reißhauer S, Berneck BS, Issmail L, Schönfelder J, Casado JP, Poremba A, Rögner F-H, Standfest B, Makert GR, Walcher L, Kistenmacher A-K, Fricke S, Grunwald T, Ulbert S, Bayer L. Automated application of low energy electron irradiation enables inactivation of pathogen- and cell-containing liquids in biomedical research and production facilities. Scientific reports 10 (2020) 1, Artikel-Nr.: 12786, 14 Seiten. doi: 10.1038/s41598-020-69347-7
  • Fertey J, Bayer L, Grunwald T, Pohl A, Beckmann J, Gotzmann G, Casado JP, Schönfelder J, Rögner FH, Wetzel C, Thoma M, Bailer SM, Hiller E, Rupp S, Ulbert S. Pathogens Inactivated by Low-Energy-Electron Irradiation Maintain Antigenic Properties and Induce Protective Immune Responses. Viruses 2016, 8(11), 319; doi: 10.3390/v8110319

Diagnostic assays

The unit has know-how and technologies for the design and production of recombinant antigens from all kinds of viruses and microbes. Technologies include proprietary ways for the elimination of cross-reacting epitopes (e.g. in flavivirus diagnostic). These proteins are used for the development of serologic tests, e.g. ELISAs. Other diagnostics are PCRs (e.g. real time PCR) and virus culture.



  • Rockstroh A, Barzon L, Kumbukgolla W, Su HX, Lizarazo E, Vincenti-Gonzalez MF, Tami A, Ornelas AMM, Aguiar RS, Cadar D, Schmidt-Chanasit J, Ulbert S. Dengue Virus IgM Serotyping by ELISA with Recombinant Mutant Envelope Proteins. Emerg Infect Dis. 2019 Jan;25(1):1111-1115. doi: 10.3201/eid2501.180605. Epub 2019 Jan 17. 
  • Rockstroh A, Wolf J, Fertey J, Kalbitz S, Schroth S, Lübbert C, Ulbert S, Borte S. Correlation of humoral immune responses to different SARS-CoV-2 antigens with virus neutralizing antibodies and symptomatic severity in a German COVID-19 cohort. Emerg Microbes Infect. 2021 Dec;10(1):774-781. doi: 10.1080/22221751.2021.1913973

Virus testing

The working group carries out tests in cell culture on the antiviral effect of substances, materials and surface coatings. For active ingredients and substances, the concentration range in which the antiviral effect occurs is also determined. For surface coatings, the investigations are based on common standard protocols (e.g. ISO 21702 for non-porous surfaces or ISO 18184 for textile products).


Fraunhofer lighthouse project

Automated production technologies for mRNA-based drugs